I was on Pinterest doing some digital deep cleaning the other day and came across my daughters birthday board. I was suddenly inspired to write this post because Pinterest has helped me to plan my wedding, baby shower and baby girls first birthday party. Going through these major life events in the past few years has taught me how much that I enjoy party planning. So I wanted to provide tips on how to use this fun and free forum for some celebration inspiration.
My favorite part of planning life events is the menu. Decor is also very important but Im a little more foodie than crafty. That is how Pinterest became my official party organizer! I like to start with a general theme and go from there. I will use my daughters party last year as an example.She was born at the tail end of November so I decided to create a Winter ONEderland to celebrate her first birthday. I typed in those keywords under search and with one click all sorts of wonderful ideas were at my fingertips.
I began with decoration ideas to get a sense of what colors and textures appealed to me. I liked gold, pink, silver and icy blues. I saved several pins and went to Dollar Tree to price and see what they had on hand. I ended up buying a lot of things that I needed on the spot to include various serving platters, clear vases, pine cones, ribbon, ornaments and cute wintery decorations to display throughout the house. I believe my total bill was around $30.
I bought snowflake themed plates and napkins at Party City as well as kids activities and a few more festive decorations. I ordered a pink tutu for her high chair from Amazon. I bought cute little clothes pins from Walmart and used kitchen twine to display her 1-12 month pictures over the mantle. Our winter wonderland was really starting to come together. Also, as an added bonus I can reuse the decor every year for Christmas.
Now its time for the food! I purchased most of my ingredients from our local grocery store. I got a few more specialty and last minute items from Walmart. For appetizers, I served sausage balls and scrumptious cream cheese sausage bites that my stepmother in law made. I wanted to have a food station and pondered doing chili and hot cocoa. On second thought, I figured that I would have a lot going on without the added stress of keeping things hot and refilled so opted for a sandwich station instead.
I bought sweet and plain sandwich rolls, sliced honey ham, smoked turkey and Cajun roast along with three different kinds of cheese. I also put out a variety of fun components to include pickles, condiments and bacon pimento cheese. I made a Tuscan pasta salad and baked potato dip to accompany the sandwiches. I sliced up red and green apples and made a caramel cream cheese dip for a more healthy snack option. For beverages, I made a festive cranberry citrus punch and had mini marshmallows and peppermint sticks to put in hot cocoa mugs courtesy of Keurig.
I wanted to include a few sweets in addition to the cake and found some pins for gingerbread man and peppermint bark Oreos that were adorable! I also made hot chocolate brownies that fit perfectly with the winter theme. I added Keeblers wedding cookies to the mix because I ate a lot of those growing up and thought that the sugar coating looked like snow. I ordered the birthday cake from Winn Dixie and bought a tub of Neapolitan blue bell ice cream to serve with it.
Overall, the party and food went over well with only a few minor hiccups. My brownies were soupy. I decided to make them that morning so they would be warm and fresh but the marshmallow topping needed more time to set. People took it in stride though and scraped up the gooey delight. The next day they were perfect.
The lady in the bakery who I ordered the cake from told me that they would include a big #1 candle but we couldnt find it anywhere after searching through the box that it came in. I slightly panicked because I didnt have any birthday candles in the house. Not to worry, my crafty sister saved the day by fashioning one out of a tea light.In hindsight, I probably had too much food for a small family event but it was her first birthday so I had to go all out. I hope that this post was informative. Happy party pinning!